Indy Fuel players in review: The defense

Today concludes a two-part series looking back at the Indy Fuel’s 2016-17 season. We look back at the defensemen who finished the year with the team, their status and where they might fit in the future, either in Indy or elsewhere. Yesterday’s installment looked at the forwards.

Defensemen

Trevor Campbell

  • Contract: ECHL (Fuel)
  • 2016-17 status: Rookie (23 pro games)
  • Notes: Campbell actually has been in the ECHL for one-plus seasons, but will be classified as a rookie, as he played the last 11 games for Bakersfield in 2014-15 after finishing his college career at Alaska-Fairbanks, and then was injured for much of the season before being traded from Tulsa to the Fuel. He had two assists in 12 games and provided good skating ability as a depth defenseman who moved in and out of the lineup.

Kevin Clare

  • Contract: ECHL (Fuel)
  • 2016-17 status: Tweener (118 pro games)
  • Notes: Clare finished his second pro season with the Fuel as a late-season acquisition from Elmira. He often played a depth role, but provided some offense with five points in 13 games. Overall this season, he had 4-15-19 in 67 games and had an even +/-. He was part of an ECHL regular season champion in Toledo last season, as well, and has seven goals and 30 assists in his 118 pro games.

Dillon Fournier

  • Contract: NHL (Chicago)
  • 2016-17 status: Tweener (64 pro games)
  • Notes: Fournier had one assist in seven games before suffering an injury early in the year. He has good speed and skill, which caused Chicago to draft him in the second round in 2012, but the injury caused him to play only nine games combined between the AHL & ECHL this season. He has two goals and six assists in 41 ECHL games, and three assists in 23 career AHL games. He is signed through 2016-17.

Anders Franzon

  • Contract: ECHL (Fuel)
  • 2016-17 status: Tweener (192 pro games)
  • Notes: Franzon has been steady in his two years with the Fuel, with 3-12-15 this year after posting a 3-14-17 line last season. He has 16 goals and 47 assists in his three-year pro career. He is 68 games shy of achieving veteran status, so he has at least one more year as a “tweeter.” Late in the season, Franzon and Nick Petrecki formed the Fuel’s shutdown pair, and were very effective, with two big defensemen matching Franzon’s puck-moving skill and Petrecki’s strength.

Sam Jardine

  • Contract: AHL (Rockford)
  • 2016-17 status: Tweener (56 pro games)
  • Notes: Jardine signed with Rockford this offseason after playing three years at Ohio State. He had two goals and three assists in 50 games, and also played in six games for Rockford. Jardine is one of those players who truly enjoys playing hockey – he’s always smiling and enjoying being at the rink. It’s common for defenders on AHL deals to spend one year developing and getting ice time in the ECHL then move up to the AHL.

Patrick Koudys

  • Contract: ECHL (Fuel)
  • 2016-17 status: Tweener (38 pro games)
  • Notes: A second-generation Indy player – his father Jim played for the Checkers in the mid-1980s – Patrick had a goal and three assists in 38 games. With his size (6-3, 210), he wasn’t afraid to mix it up physically and drop the gloves – memorably challenging Fort Wayne’s Cody Sol on New Year’s Eve – and is known as one of the team’s hardest workers. He took advantage of the opportunities he was given for ice time, experience that will serve him well in the future.

Ben Marshall

  • Contract: ECHL (Fuel)
  • 2016-17 status: Tweener (72 pro games)
  • Marshall made the all-rookie team after posting 12 goals and 24 assists and being among the ECHL’s defenseman scoring leaders all season. A strong puck-mover with a great shot and good vision, he’ll likely get looks from AHL teams next season, but he’d be a great asset again on the Fuel blueline. Marshall was one of two players – Rhett Bly being the other – to play in all 72 Fuel games this season.

Nick Mattson

  • Contract: AHL (Rockford)
  • 2016-17 status: Tweener
  • Notes: Safe to say Mattson, a 6th-round Blackhawks pick in 2010, has probably graduated from the ECHL. He’s playing nearly 20 minutes a night in Rockford after his most recent callup, and has five assists in 14 games for the IceHogs after posting 15 points in 48 games for the Fuel. A strong playmaker who’s also good in his own zone, Mattson has excelled at every level, from junior to college to the pro ranks.

Zach Miskovic

  • Contract: ECHL (Fuel)
  • 2016-17 status: Veteran (356 pro games)
  • Notes: Miskovic was a strong leader and locker room presence as the team’s captain. He missed the last few weeks of the regular season, as he was loaned to the AHL’s Charlotte Checkers. As a veteran, he can become a free agent, but he had a strong year in his first full ECHL season, with 22 points in 63 games, as well as often facing the opponent’s top line. He has played 356 pro games – all but 69 in the AHL – and his leadership and back-end skill can be good for teams at both levels.

Nick Petrecki

  • Contract: ECHL (Fuel)
  • 2016-17 status: Veteran (362 pro games)
  • Notes: The former NHL first-round draft pick (28th overall to San Jose in 2007), Petrecki recently finished his seventh pro season, and first full year in the ECHL. He had four goals and seven assists in 31 games with the Fuel and was a team-high +5, tying Cody Sharib for team honors in that category. Add in his six assists in 14 games at Elmira, and he had career-highs in goals and points. Petrecki now has 12 goals and 54 assists in his 362 pro games, which includes one NHL game with San Jose in 2012-13, 316 AHL games and 45 ECHL games. He became the team’s captain this spring when Zach Miskovic was loaned to AHL Charlotte. Petrecki is an asset with size – 6-3, 230 – a strong, simple, imposing physical game, but also some ability to jump into the rush and generate chances by getting the puck on net. He also was loaned to the AHL’s Chicago Wolves during the season.

Goaltenders

Keegan Asmundson

  • Contract: ECHL (Fuel)
  • 2016-17 status: Tweener (29 pro games)
  • Notes: Asmundson came into his own with the Fuel, going 6-6-0 with a .917 save percentage and 2.61 GAA. At 6-5, 234, he covers a lot of the net, which is why he set record with Canisius College from 2012-15, including a 1.96 GAA as a senior. After starting the year in Evansville, he had three very solid starts in the SPHL with Pensacola – winning all three with a 1.62 GAA – and then parlayed that into a solid role with the Fuel. Signed to back up Shane Owen while Mac Carruth was in Rockford, he became the starter after Owen’s trade and another callup to Carruth when injuries at both the NHL and AHL levels caused the IceHogs to need a goaltender, and handled much of the workload down the stretch.

Terry Shafer

  • Contract: ECHL (Fuel)
  • 2016-17 status: Rookie (3 pro games)
  • Notes: Shafer set records at Robert Morris, where he went 19-10-2 with a .927 save percentage this season in 31 games. He was solid in three games with the Fuel, especially his finale, when he held down a high-powered Fort Wayne attack. He had a 3.84 GAA in three games – two starts and a third-period effort – all on the road. Shafer is an aggressive goaltender who has good quickness.

1 Response

  1. April 21, 2016

    […] Today begins a two-part series looking back at the Indy Fuel’s 2016-17 season. We look back at the forwards who finished the year with the team, their status and where they might fit in the future, either in Indy or elsewhere. Part 2: the defense and goaltenders. […]